List of bidders for Dodgers cut

- By Bob Nightengal­e USA TODAY

St. Louis Rams owner Stan Kroenke, whose NFL team has an opt-out lease at its stadium after 2014, is among the finalists who advanced to the second round of the bidding process for the Los Angeles Dodgers, according to the Los Angeles Times. At least five finalists have advanced.

While Major League Baseball Commission­er Bud Selig continues to be resolute in his plans to expand the postseason from eight to 10 teams this year — implementi­ng a one-game wild-card playoff — there remains uncertaint­y about whether it can happen before 2013.

“It’s pretty definite in my mind,” Selig told USA TODAY. “Teams are anxious. Clubs really want it.”

But despite Selig’s aspiration­s, the Major League Baseball Players Associatio­n has doubts about whether it’s feasible.

“The 2012 season was not designed to accommodat­e an extra round of playoffs,” Michael Weiner, executive director of the MLBPA, told USA TODAY. “We’re having discussion­s to see if it can work. We’ll decide in the next month or so if we’re able to do it.”

The time period in question is Oct. 4-8. The regular season ends Oct. 3, and the World Series begins Oct. 24. If the playoffs are to be expanded, the three weeks in between must accommodat­e possible regularsea­son makeup games or tiebreaker­s, the one-game playoff among the wild-card teams, the five-game division series and the seven-game league championsh­ip series.

Also, MLB and the union agreed that tiebreaker­s for division titles will now be broken on the field for the first time under the new playoff format, according to two baseball officials with knowledge of the format but not authorized to publicly discuss it.

With the day after the regular season needing to be open to accommodat­e possible tiebreaker­s, MLB and the union must resolve how teams would be able to play a one-game wild-card game and have sufficient travel time before starting the best-of-five division series.

The seven-game league championsh­ip series likely can’t start any later than Sunday, Oct. 14, to provide time for the World Series to start Wednesday, Oct. 24 .

“It’s all in the scheduling,” Selig said. “I think we’ll have it because I’ve told everybody we’ll have it. But it’s never over till it’s over.”

MLB and the union agreed that the expanded playoffs would commence in 2013, but they must reach a resolution by March 1 for the wild-card round to begin this season.

“The scheduling part is not absolutely perfect this year,” former manager Tony La Russa said Sunday. La Russa, who led the St. Louis Cardinals to the 2011 World Series title after clinching a wild-card berth on the final day of the season, is one of four current and former managers on Selig’s on-field committee that last met Jan 12.

“But if you’re one of the clubs that has the opportunit­y to secure a wild card, I’ll take the disadvanta­ge to just have a chance. I’d play a day-night doublehead­er.”

The wild-card round was designed in part to offer a greater reward to the six division winners. The Cardinals were the fourth wild-card winner to win the World Series since the wild card was introduced in 1995; nine wild-card teams have reached the World Series.

“It was felt that the way (the playoffs) are set up now is that you didn’t have enough of a premium to winning the division,” La Russa said. “It’s a sixmonth accomplish­ment. And there was not a significan­t disadvanta­ge to winning the wild card; it should be more than just losing a home game.”

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